Israeli Provocateurs Are Plotting Attacks on US Forces in Iraq, Iranian FM Zarif Says

© AP Photo / Qassim Abdul-ZahraUS Soldiers stand amid damage at a site of an Iranian bombing at Ain al-Asad Air Base, in Anbar, Iraq, Monday, 13 January 2020. Ain al-Asad Air Base was struck by a barrage of Iranian missiles on Wednesday, in retaliation for the US drone strike that killed a top Iranian commander, General Qassem Soleimani, whose killing raised fears of a wider war in the Middle East.
US Soldiers stand amid damage at a site of an Iranian bombing at Ain al-Asad Air Base, in Anbar, Iraq, Monday, 13 January 2020. Ain al-Asad Air Base was struck by a barrage of Iranian missiles on Wednesday, in retaliation for the US drone strike that killed a top Iranian commander, General Qassem Soleimani, whose killing raised fears of a wider war in the Middle East.  - Sputnik International
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The embassy and other American facilities in Baghdad's so-called "Green Zone" have routinely come under rocket fire over the last two years, with Washington linking the attacks to Iraqi militias purportedly backed by Iran.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif has revealed that Tehran has received intelligence from Iraq indicating that Americans might come under attack from "Israeli agent-provocateurs". Zarif added that the purportedly planned attacks are intended to force the hand of US President Donald Trump to retaliate, apparently against Iran, which Washington has blamed for past attacks on its positions and buildings in Iraq.

The minister also cautioned POTUS against falling for the alleged false-flag attacks, warning that his actions could "backfire badly", not only against the US, but also against his "BFFs".​

The American contingency in Iraq has routinely come under rocket fire, which has affected the country's embassy in Baghdad's so-called "Green Zone", as well as Iraqi bases hosting US troops. Washington claims local militias, purportedly backed by Iran, are responsible for the attacks, but Iran has only claimed responsibility for a missile attack against military bases in January 2020.

The latter came in the response to the 3 January 2020 US drone strike, which killed Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, who was leaving Baghdad's International Airport where he arrived to lead a diplomatic mission. Soleimani was carrying a secret message for Saudi Arabia that Baghdad was to pass on. The message contained an offer to restore diplomatic relations between Riyadh and Tehran, but it was never delivered.

In this photo released by an official website of the office of the Iranian supreme leader, commander of Iran's Quds Force, Qassem Soleimani, prays in a religious ceremony at a mosque in the residence of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in Tehran, Iran, Friday, March 27, 2015. Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif sought Friday to reassure the six world powers conducting nuclear power talks in Switzerland, saying the negotiations remained focused on sealing a deal.  - Sputnik International
US Haunted by Prospect of Iran’s Revenge for Soleimani, General Says

The strike was not approved by Iraqi authorities and infuriated not only Iran, but also Iraqi lawmakers. The latter passed a non-bonding motion demanding the eviction of all foreign troops from the country. Tehran, in turn, vowed to avenge Soleimani's death unless the US withdraws its troops from the entire region. Iran's warnings and the pressure from Iraqi lawmakers did not convince Washington to withdraw its troops from the country, but they did vacate some of the bases there and announced a reduction of their military presence.

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